The controversy over veteran batsman Mithali Raj not being included in the Women’s T-20 World Cup semi-final match has now snowballed. Mitali has accused coach Ramesh Powar that he has tried to humiliate her. Mitali has kept her side through e-mail sent to the BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India).
Mithali has taken on coach Ramesh Powar. She accused Powar of adopting a discriminatory policy. Along also, there is talk of humiliation. Mithali has also accused Diana Edulji. Mitali Raj has written, “The coach told me not to come to the ground for the match against Australia. After the match, the coach said, ‘How is it feeling after sitting out and being dropped from the team?’
35-year-old Mithali has written to the BCCI that Diana Edulji, a member of the Governing Council (COA), has misused her position. Mithali said, “Diana Edulji called me and did a stabbing job in my back and justified whatever was done with me.”
She said in a letter to BCCI CEO Rahul Johri and General Manager of Cricket Operations Saba Karim, “For the first time in my 20-year long career, I felt humiliated. I had to compel myself to think that the importance of my services for the country is for some people present in power or they want to end my self-confidence.”
“I do not want to say anything against T-20 captain Harmanpreet, but I was hurt by her support for the coach’s decision to keep me out.” Mithali said, “I wanted to win the World Cup for the country. I am sorry that we have missed the golden opportunity. ‘
Mithali said, ‘I always trusted Diana Edulji and respected her. I never thought that she would abuse her position against me. Especially when I had told them everything that happened to me in the West Indies. She said,” I am very sad with the decision to agree to keep me out of the semi-finals because she knew the reality. “
About Powar, she said that many such incidents occurred, when she felt humiliated. Mithali said, ‘If I am sitting around somewhere, they would have gone out or watched others while batting on the net, but when I was batting he did not stop to take a look. When I used to talk to him, he would act busy on his phone or go away. ‘Mithali said,’ It was quite insulting and everyone was seeing that I was being humiliated, despite this I did not lose my temper ‘.
Mithali said, “When the situation was uncontrollable, I talked to the team manager too, but after that the situation went worse. As for the coach, I was not in the team. “Mithali said that Powar did not want her to come to the ground in the match against Australia. Mithali further said, “After the team meeting in the evening, Ramesh phoned in my room and said that I should not come on the field, because there will be media. I was stunned that the media has problems with my teammates. In our biggest match, I was asked to separate from my team.”
It is worth mentioning that Indian Women’s T20 Captain Harmanpreet Kaur and ODI captain Mitali Raj have been approached by BCCI officials. Mithali was left out of the last-11 despite being fit in the T20 World Cup semi-final. Harmanpreet Kaur, after India’ s defeat by eight wickets in the semi-finals, showed that this decision was justified. On this dispute, both senior players and manager Satishbhai Bhattacharya met BCCI CEO Rahul Johri and GM Saba Karim in the past. On Maitali’s exit, the manager called Harmanpreet as ‘liar’ in a tweet which he deleted later.
Due to knee injury in the match against Australia in the tournament, Mithali was out, but in the two matches played earlier, she had scored fifty plus in consecutive innings. One day before the semi-final match she was declared fit. Nevertheless, the management decided to keep her on the bench and retain the last XI that won against Australia.
On the other hand, Edulji says, “The COA will not be involved in this case itself. We will not interfere in cricket issues. Who plays in the last eleven, this is not our headache and it should not be the problem of anyone else. The decision should be taken by the team management. It is not the COA’s job to question the team management’s decisions. “